UPDATE: Swamp Thing’s cancellation had nothing to do with taxes


We erroneously reported that Swamp Thing was likely canceled due to issues with tax breaks. Deadline recently reported that wasn’t the case.

Social media has been aflutter over this past week in the wake of the strange and sudden cancellation of the new DC Universe series, Swamp Thing. We erroneously reported the reasoning behind the cancellation being an accounting error in North Carolina (where Swamp Thing was filmed) tax breaks based on information from an entertainment reporter on Twitter.

Since the article was posted, Guy Gasser, the director of the North Carolina Film Office, has clarified the misinformation reported by John Gholson. Gholson’s Twitter account has since been suspended.

Deadline explains some of the factual information given by Gasser:

"The North Carolina Film Office gets a grand total of $31 million a year to pay out to qualifying productions who apply and qualify. Swamp Thing was awarded “just north of $4.9 million” for its pilot. The filming of the remainder of Season 1 took the approved payout up to the $12 million maximum (which was set by the state legislation that created the economic outreach program)."

The production team for Swamp Thing found out around the same time everyone else did. It’s a sad part of the business. But that doesn’t mean the cancellation isn’t unusual. It received praise for its pilot episode and James Wan’s involvement made the project more high-profile than some of the other DC Universe series.

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But Swamp Thing has been mired in production issues for months now. Not too long ago it was reported the first season was cut down from the proposed thirteen episodes to ten.

If it wasn’t canceled over tax breaks, then why was Swamp Thing canceled?

Unfortunately, we still don’t have a definitive answer to that question. If I had to guess, I would say it’s because DC Universe may be disappearing soon.

The streaming service never took off the way WB was anticipating it to. Even now, the app is only producing one original series at a time; Titans then Doom Patrol then Swamp Thing, none of these shows are airing in succession which is a strange decision to make.

That would be like Netflix only producing one original series a month. It’s not enough to drive up their subscriber rates. It would make more sense for Warner Brothers to absorb DC Universe into their planned streaming service, WarnerMedia, and charge an additional fee for the DC programs.

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The good news is, without sticky financial issues bogging down the series, it could mean Swamp Thing has more hope for a revival, potentially on WarnerMedia or another platform altogether.

For now, you can stream the series on the DC Universe app. New episodes will continue to release every Friday until the finale on August 2nd. 

Are you disappointed with Swamp Thing’s cancellation? Let us know in the comments.